Fulani Militants Destroy Nigeria’s Jiri Village

Daily Attacks in the Region Result in Severe Humanitarian Crisis

06/28/2018 Washington, D.C. (International Christian Concern) – International Christian Concern (ICC) has learned that Fulani militants attacked Jiri village, a small farming community of approximately 350 people, on Wednesday, June 20, 2018. During the attack, they destroyed the farms and homes of local farmers. Additionally, reports indicate that the militants broke into several churches and destroyed pews, instruments, and other church property.

Monday Chiku, a local community leader, was one of those who witnessed the attack. He reported to ICC, “I was at home at about 1:20 p.m. They came suddenly, shooting from a distance then moved close to our homes… We fled into the bush. They went on to set the houses on fire, killed our domestic animals, goats, chickens, pigs, and took some away. They destroyed our farming implements. We fled and left an old man, about 85 years old.  They took him away and we do not know whether he is dead or alive. They looted churches, damaged and burnt some items. We have three churches in the village – Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA), Catholic, and Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN).”

Fulani militants have attacked this region many times prior to this incident. The attackers were able to flee after destroying the village as they have every time before. This is because the Nigerian government and military have proven themselves incapable of protecting even those who are attacked time and time again. Chiku continued, “When soldiers came to confront the militia, they couldn’t contain them and retreated because of the herdsmen’s superior fire power.”

Dauda Ishaya, another eyewitness, said, “The next day we went to rescue the old man we left in the village, but we were chased away by the attackers. We are now IDPs in Miango, wherever any of us found shelter. The number of family houses burnt are about 47. The churches in Jiri are Catholic, ECWA, and COCIN. They broke into the churches and damaged items, some they gathered and set fire on them… The attackers approached from the direction of Badurun, a village in Chawai chiefdom. There are Fulanis that live around there.”

ICC’s Regional Manager for Africa, Nathan Johnson, stated, “It is sad to see yet another attack on a Christian farming village. It is long past time that the Nigerian government steps up to protect all of its citizens equally. They must stop favoring those who are committing these atrocities and hold them accountable for their despicable actions.”

For interviews with Nathan Johnson, Regional Manager, please contact Olivia Miller, Communications Coordinator: press@persecution.org

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